Turkey on Wednesday eased curfew restrictions for people over the age of 65, those with chronic illnesses and young people under 20 years old.

In a statement, the country’s Interior Ministry said that people over 65 years old would be allowed to leave their homes, remaining within walking distance and wearing masks, on May 10 between 11.00 a.m. 3:00 p.m. local time (0800-1200GMT).

Children under 14 years old will be allowed out on May 13 during the same hours, while 15-20 year-olds would be able to leave their houses on May 15, also within walking distance and wearing masks, the statement added.

Turkey introduced stay-home orders for those over the age of 65 on March 21, while those under 20 years old had been restricted since April 3 to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

In a separate statement, the ministry said that flower shops would be operating home-deliveries despite curfew over the weekend to mark Mother’s Day on Sunday.

As of Wednesday, the country reported a total of 131,744 coronavirus cases and 78,202 of them have fully recovered. The death toll stands at 3,584.

COVID-19 cases have been reported in 187 countries and regions since it emerged in China last December, with the US and Europe now the hardest-hit areas.

The pandemic has killed over 259,700 worldwide, with total infections over 3.71 million, while recoveries surpassed 1.22 million, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

*Writing by Handan Kazanci

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